12 in 2012 {March}

at our church we do this thing... we call it 'BowBeforeTheBattle'. it's simply a time of worship and prayer together as a body of believers.   we do it because we believe God honors and responds to our worship, our surrender, our praise. we do it because we want to acknowledge our complete dependence on HIM.  we do it because on the first Wednesday of every month we host 'SkullChurch', an evangelistic-rock-n-roll-Heaven-n-Hell-life-or-death event where we seek to make Jesus famous.  this is a massive monthly undertaking, and we know we can't do it without the power and presence of Jesus himself. we know that the enemy doesn't like it very much, and that we are truly engaged in a spiritual battle, a war for the lost.  so the last Wednesday of every month, the week prior to every SkullChurch, we bow before the battle...giving honor and glory and praise to God the Father for what we know and expect him to do!!

at this months BB4tB, my daughter, Izzi Ray, led us in worship (along with her band of friends/teens, all fantastic young musicians). now, i know you'll have trouble believing me when i say, i'm not biased. i'm just saying...as a musician... it was EPIC!  just fiercely real and legit and beautiful. ok, as a parent, i was also in awe and spent most of the night between tears and laughter. just seeing God move as people worshiped was truly stunning.

as i worshiped and sang along, i asked the Lord to show me what to pray, to search my heart and reveal anything offensive in me (Psalm 139:23-24). and almost immediately i began to see (and hear) the lyrics to the songs we were singing in a different light, and realized they had a common theme...

'you can have it all, all my heart, all for you....'
'you can have it all,  all i am is yours...'
'take my life take all that i am, with all that i am i will love you...'
'you won't relent until you have it all....my heart is yours...'
'Jesus paid it all, all to HIM i owe...'

i sing those words, fairly often in fact. but do i truly live them out? i mean, ALL my heart? you can have it ALL? the definition of all is: the whole, any, everything.  can i say, in all honesty, that i have surrendered every single part of my heart and life under Christ's authority? absolutely ANY thing i say or do? my WHOLE life? down to my attitudes, relationships, desires, hopes, fears, marriage...
or are there areas where i'd rather maintain control? and if so, why? what would keep me from total surrender? the bottom line, i think, is this: do i trust my GOD enough to say it....with my WHOLE heart... you can have it ALL... because i know you care and know and control it ALL.

i don't think Izzi intended to choose the songs based on their similarities, i think she simply chose the songs she loved and wanted to play.  but clearly God was in control and leading her....

... which inspired me! i had a verse already in mind for March, but after hearing God speak so clearly, i've chosen Mark 12:30 as the verse i want to memorize and hide in my heart this month.

'... love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind and with all your strength.'

what verse are you going to commit to memory this month?